Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Doug Engelbart and HCI in the context of Simondon

Such techniques of eye-hand-ear-coordination that we take more or less granted like the mouse and WYSIWYG flag an interesting area of not only HCI development and design per se, but also a wider transformation concerning the understanding of supposedly human conventions and practices such as learning. What the work of such pioneers as Doug Engelbart flags is the same area of interests that Gilbert Simondon and Bernard Stiegler in philosophy, André Leroi-Gourhan in anthropology or for example Friedrich Kittler in media theory emphasize; there is no natural human being, but the most seemingly natural and primitive tools that we engage and interact with are formative to the "human-form" which is part of our milieu. Or differently put, our milieus of being are constantly formed even to an evolutionary degree of the tools that are formative of our being (superjects instead of subjects, as Whitehead writes in another context; and the way in-formation is understood by Simondon not as a substance but as a process of formation). Indeed, this is why archaeologies of HCI benefit from the wider discussions concerning the subject and the human-being in its milieus in order to develop a full-fledged understanding of the spheres in which computer design work took place.

A short clip of Doug Engelbart talking about his earlier projects.

No comments:

Post a comment